BLOG 277 November 2, 2015
Another Intifada coming in Israel? Maybe not.
Since October 1, seven Israelis were killed and dozens wounded in more than 24 incidents. Palestinian terrorism has continued to spread across the country but most of the violence has been centered in east Jerusalem and specific neighborhoods as well as in the Old City. Unfortunately, you have probably heard little of this situation reported on local television.
Palestinian terrorist organizations like Hamas have warned that an Intifada is coming. The flames were fanned by PLO President Abbas’s call for Israel to stop contaminating the Temple Mount. Jordan’s King Abdullah added to the chaos by blaming Israel for disturbing the status quo. Young radicals found those declarations to be catalysts for street riots and attempts to wound Israelis. However, they have not produced the fighting the Arabs hoped for and the results have not escalated.
What now appears to be occurring in Israel might better be labeled a “terrorist outbreak.” No question that violence is continuing but at this moment it does not appear to be gaining the momentum necessary to explode into a massive rebellion. Most of the attacks are by single individuals with “cold” weapons such as knives, vehicles, and weaponry-like axes. Certainly, these weapons are serious enough, but come short of rifles, machine guns, etc. Usually there are no accomplices working with the attackers. The attackers may be getting the message that unless they want to die, they better stay home.
One of the problems that has surfaced is that Palestinian social media activists are doctoring photos and videos to make it appear that innocent Palestinian children are being killed when these individuals are actually initiators in assaults. In addition, the charges of shifts in the status quo on the Temple Mount are actually disinformation. Prime Minister Netanyahu has repeatedly denied the accusations made by Abbas and King Abdullah.
Who’s responsible for this chaos? Boaz Ganor, founder and director of The International Institute for Counter-Terrorism, asserts that both Abbas and Netanyahu bear responsibility for the current chaos. The failure of both leaders to come to a negotiated settlement of the West Bank issue has set the stage for the terrorist epidemic. No matter what each man claims, they both are intransigent in their positions that negate any settlement.
Ganor believes the installation of closed-circuit cameras on the Temple Mount that would be monitored by Jordan would settle the claims that have fired up the recent attacks. Seems like an easy and long overdue solution to ease tensions. Why not?
The truth is that each side uses every opportunity to propagate their positions. In the situation of the Palestinians, the result is more death.
Let’s hope we’re watching only a temporary terrorism outbreak.